More About Landmark Benefits

1. Landmark status consistently has improved property values because of its importance and rarity in our nation's history. Research over the past three decades has demonstrated that historic properties, including National Landmarks, have higher property values to comparable non-historic properties. In the real estate market, National Landmarks are regarded as rare works of art (2,500 sites in existence) and thus attract educated buyers who support the pr0tection of historic resources. In addition, Landmark status brings federal support and potential funding benefits only reserved for this type of property.

2. Landmark properties' values are further improved because of the Department of Interior legal commitment to insure that the sites maintain their historic integrity. This agency conducts periodic monitoring of the site and offer technical assistance to owners of Landmark properties. In the long run, this will benefit the Village Green because it will help to develop long range plans and maintain standards that will protect and enchance the value of the property in its daily yearly operations. This professional approach will also place the property in a stronger position for future funding.

3. Landmark properties have top funding priority in a Presidential declared disasters. This include natural disasters (such as earthquake, flood, and fire) and civil unrest. After the 1994 Northridge earthquake, two local National Historic Landmarks receive these funds: Watts Tower $2,000,000 and the Coliseum $96,000,000. In an October 1999 conversation, Steade Crago (head of the state Office of Historic Preservation) stated that FEMA recently transferred $15,000,000 to his department for 20 historic properties which were impacted by the Northridge earthquake. National Historic Landmarks have first priority. This particular benefit is of great importance to the Village Green because it is located about a block from the Inglewood Newport fault, the most dangerous earthquake fault in Los Angeles county. At the present, the Village Green does not have earthquake insurance.

4. Landmark properties have a strong advantage in gaining competitive grants, loans, and financial incentives. It is standard procedure for eligible Landmark properties to have first priority in competitive grants and other financial incentives. Because of its Landmark status, the Village Green automatically became eligible for the Mills Act (property tax reduction). This program has the potential of attracting up to a million dollars in a decade to improve the community's historic infrastructure while benefiting eligible homeowners.

5. Landmark properties attract influential partnerships which can benefit the site and thus enhance its property value. For instance, Watts Towers is working in partnership with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Getty Institute in monitoring its historic integrity. At the Village Green, a partnership with two of the most important Clarence Stein scholars at Cornell University was critical in the successful completion of the National Historic Landmark certification (1996 to 2001). In addition, the Department of Interior has a program to match donors with Landmarks which are at risk.

6. Landmark properties are eligible to place their site plans in a special federal archives. These plans are housed by the Historic American Building Survey in Washington, D.C. Two purposes are served: resources for scholars in their research on American history and a vital source for the federal government to rebuild quickly the National Historic Landmarks which are seriously damaged in a disaster.

7. Landmark properties are protected by federal law against any adverse effects that can be caused by any federaly funded projects. The Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (section 106) mandates that any federal project that could affect a National Register property is required to have an environmental impact study. With section section 110 of the Historic Preservation Act of 1966, Landmark properties, such as the Village Green, will get further protection. The Department of Interior is committed legally to take action to minimize any harm caused by a project which as federal involvement.

8. Most important, owners of National Historic Landmarks have the opportunity to serve as stewards of the Nation's most important historic and cultural assets. This participation will benefit current and future generations, both on the national and international levels. For six decades, the Village Green has been used as a "living textbook" to help urban planners, landscape architects, and architects to design better communities. It is part of a national movement which was started by Village Green consulting architect Clarence Stein and his colleagues on the east coast in the 1920s. Greenbelt, Maryland has already been designated as a National Historic Landmark. Two other Stein's garden cities are at the final stage of being designated as National Historic Landmarks. They are Radburn (New Jersey) and Chatham Village (Pennsylvania).